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Microsoft blames Google for inferior YouTube app

Windows Phone maker points finger at rival for its lack of access to metadata

By MARK JONES

Published: 4 January, 2013

READ MORE: US | Microsoft | Handset | Windows Phone

When it comes to YouTube on Windows Phone its app might not be as fully featured and as slick as its equivalent on other platforms, but according to Microsoft that's not its fault. The accusation arose in an official blog post by Microsoft's Vice President & Deputy General Counsel Dave Heiner where he has highlighted concerns surrounding key areas of Google's business practices.

According to the post Microsoft has been blocked from using all of YouTube's metadata for two years, where Android and iPhone have been given free reign to create more polished apps. This has apparently prevented the app from allowing users to search for video categories, find favourites and see video ratings within a "rich user interface".

Microsoft claims that this lack of freedom to craft the YouTube app as resulted in its effort being just a "just a browser displaying YouTube's mobile Web site, without the rich functionality offered on competing phones".

While iOS has access to the desired information Heiner believes that it's allowed that privilege as it doesn't offer a competing search engine. Further to those accusations he goes on to say that Microsoft has recently learned from a source within YouTube that senior executives from Google "told them not to enable a first-class YouTube experience on Windows Phones".

It isn't the first time that Microsoft has complained about the way Google does business and it's pointed out at the start of the post that antitrust investigations have already been opened up into Google's business practices.

While the claims might be quite harsh, and it's hard to image them being completely true, if Google is withholding something from Microsoft that it should otherwise be allowed then it's certainly something that should be looked into. Until they are though it looks like Windows Phone users are stuck with the inferior YouTube app.

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